Cleantech Östergötland

The Modern Wooden City

The municipality of Växjö is a prime example of Swedish wood construction, where at least 50 % of new construction will be wood by 2020. Visit Växjö to see residential and commercial buildings, as well as infrastructure made in wood.

The Växjö municipality has since long worked with a long-term strategy for wooden construction. In later years, this has been developed into a general strategy to decrease the carbon- and climate footprint. Wood as the only renewable building material is predominately used. There are similar examples in Sweden of cities employing similar strategies but Växjö is furthest ahead by the strategy The Modern Wooden City. The goal is that at least 50 % of construction in Växjö should be in wood by 2020. Today Växjö includes examples such as residential, commercial and infrastructure made in wood.

Cooperation as a key to success

A key factor to the success in Växjö has been the close cooperation between the municipality, society and the industry, the triple helix. By clear societal planning and strategy, the proximity of an innovation environment and investments by the industry work has progressed. Before 1994 fire safety requirements prohibited buildings taller than two stories in wood but the transition to a performance-based system made Sweden into a global leader in wooden construction. Wood construction in Sweden is also far ahead in terms of digitalization, prefabricated construction, automatization and robotization. Digitalization of information flows in the construction process leads to higher efficiency and improved quality.

Modular construction is well suited for prefabricated construction which is also scalable compared to traditional construction. Close to Växjö, there are factories such as Eksjöhus, Hjältevadshus, Obos and Vida. While modular construction is predominantly led by bigger companies, there are plenty of small and medium-sized companies within timber construction. Several are based in Småland, the region where Växjö is situated.

Cross-laminated timber is another area where other business models and construction systems are relevant. Sweden is far ahead in this area as well, not least with regards to moisture and fire safety for wood as a construction material.

International leading innovation environment

Smart Housing Småland (SHS) is an innovation environment based in Växjö that strives to facilitate innovation and growth within wood and glass construction. SHS is led by the Research Institutes of Sweden (RISE) and is backed by Vinnova, universities, the regional municipal board and other regional organizations. There are several types of ongoing work within SHS that relates to The Modern Wooden City such as test beds, construction projects, new technology and research projects. For example, there are current projects that strive to digitalize the process of inspection, i.e. improving quality assurance and creating more robust buildings.

By using virtual reality auralisation techniques are tested to ensure that a client may test the effect of different materials and products, e.g. how well a window may reduce noise. There are also conceptual studies for buildings taller than 20 stories, where challenges regarding structural engineering, fire safety and acoustics need to be addressed. Within SHS there is also the test bed Residential prototype where residential modules are tested. The criteria for digitalization and circular economy are used to test innovation and products.

Limnologen residential buildings

The residential building Limnologen in the Modern Wooden City consists of four 8-story buildings that used to be the tallest wooden buildings in Sweden when they were built in 2009-2011. The new residential project Trummens Strand will be the biggest wood housing project with more than 6000 cubic meters of CLT wood. The tallest buildings are eight stories tall and there’s a strong focus to show the wooden aspects of the building by having exposed massive timber walls.

Similar Best Practices

Electric busses adapted to cold climate

It is a big challenge with electric vehicles in northern Europe is to adapt them to the cold climate, both in regard to function and comfort for passengers and drivers. In Umeå in Northern Sweden there is a company that has managed to develop a technology that makes it possible to run the buses even during a very cold winter day as well as a hot sunny day with advanced air heating/cold system.

The world’s tallest wooden building

Sara Cultural Centre – the world’s tallest timber building is located in Skellefteå. The building will be housing venues for arts, performance and literature as well as a hotel. Located just below the Arctic Circle in northern Sweden, Skellefteå has a long tradition of timber building; this was the primary inspiration behind the international competition winning design for the city’s new cultural centre.

Smart Living lab in the University district of Umeå

Umeå is a fast growing city in Northern Sweden with progressive and environmentally-friendly citizens. Located 600 km north of Stockholm, the 11th largest city in Sweden has a subarctic climate, with short and fairly warm summers, but lengthy and freezing winters. Umeå will continue to grow with ecological, economic and social sustainability. The purpose is to reduce the city’s CO₂ emissions through less energy use and sustainable transports. By developing smart business models and working methods, we will ensure that we will continue to be innovative when we are developing the sustainable city.

Sharing economy contribution to a smart and sustainable city

The city of Umeå are working actively and critically with the sharing economy. The city has developed testbeds for the sharing economy in the city. Through testbeds, sharing services and digital solutions have been developed.

Gender Equality and Inclusion in Urban Planning

As segregation and inequality are increasing in many parts of the world, inclusion in the planning process of cities and communities is becoming even more important. In the North of Sweden, the city of Umeå is working hard to create an inclusive and safe environment for all.

Gothenburg Smart District Cooling

The City of Gothenburg in Sweden uses a district cooling system powered by the cool flows from Göta älv.

Sustainable logistics for a smart city

Logistics cluster Östergötland is an arena and a network for innovation and development within logistics solutions. By engaging people from different businesses in a variety of challenges, new ideas and solutions for a more sustainable logistics are developed.

Ebbepark- city transformation by testbed setting

Ebbepark is a city district in transformation, that invites partners to develop their solutions to push ahead on the sustainable transformation.

Stockholm Public Transport – The journey to sustainable public transport

Stockholm public transport (SL) is on a journey to become the most sustainable public transport provider in the world. Achieving a low environmental impact has been a priority for a long time. Today, the SL public transport system is operated on fossil-free fuels and energy from renewable sources.

Sustainable energy efficient renovation Tjärna Ängar

Renovation of old houses together with Dalarna University and Tunabyggen in a way that is better for the environment, better for the residents and cost-effective so that they can maintain a high renovation rate.
“A model is created for gentle renovation of public housing based on sustainability, both ecologically and socially and economically.”

Glava Energy Center

Glava Energy Center is an arena where different partners cooperate to create new opportunities for innovation, learning, development and testing in the field of especially PV-solar energy. The aim is to contribute to sustainable energy solutions and a more efficient use of energy.

Hulta preschool – built with inspiration from Cradle to Cradle®

Ronneby Municipality invests in Cradle to cradle® as a method to achieve circular economy, healthy materials, diversity and renewable energy. The method implies a positive attitude that has been implemented in Hulta preschool, with an environment of conscious material choices and unique outdoor environment and pedagogy.

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